Now patients who are missing teeth have a strong, beautiful alternative to bridges, partials, or full dentures. Dental implants will improve your smile and your lifestyle. They look, feel, and function like natural teeth because of a titanium anchor attached to the jawbone. Implants can also anchor bridges, partials, or full dentures to eliminate slipping. After a thorough evaluation, your dentist can tell you whether you’re a candidate for dental implants. They require adequate bone structure for placement. The first stage of the procedure involves oral surgery in which a titanium post is implanted into the jawbone for each missing tooth or for the new teeth that will anchor a bridge or denture. Nature will take its course, allowing your bone tissue to fuse with the titanium post. This creates a solid foundation.
Once the implants are secured, your dentist will attach a handcrafted, permanent crown to each post. The restorations will match your natural teeth and blend seamlessly with your smile.
By imitating an entire natural tooth, from the root up, dental implants offer a prosthetic that closely mimics nature. What is the result? Dental implant patients enjoy restored function, which allows a healthy diet of hard-to-chew foods. Speech may also improve. Strong and secure, your new smile will boost your confidence, enhance your appearance, and improve your quality of life.
Over a period of time the jawbone associated with missing teeth atrophies or is reabsorbed. This often leaves a condition in which there is poor quality and quantity of bone suitable for placement of dental implants. In these situations, most patients are not candidates for placement of dental implants.
Today, we have the ability to grow bone where needed. This not only gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, it also gives us a chance to restore functionality and esthetic appearance.
Bone grafting can repair implant sites with inadequate bone structure due to previous extractions, gum disease, or injuries. The bone is mostly obtained from a tissue bank or in severe bone loss cases; the patient’s own bone is used to help obtain a better result. Sinus bone grafts are also performed to replace bone in the posterior upper jaw. In addition, special membranes may be utilized that dissolve under the gum and protect the bone graft and encourage bone regeneration. This is called guided bone regeneration or guided tissue regeneration.
Major bone grafts are typically performed to repair defects of the jaws. These defects may arise as a result of traumatic injuries, tumor surgery, or congenital defects. Large defects are repaired using the patient’s own bone.
The maxillary sinuses are behind your cheeks and on top of the upper teeth. Sinuses are like empty rooms that have nothing in them. Some of the roots of the natural upper teeth extend up into the maxillary sinuses. When these upper teeth are removed, there is often just a thin wall of bone separating the maxillary sinus and the mouth. Dental implants need bone to hold them in place. When the sinus wall is very thin, it is impossible to place dental implants in this bone.
There is a solution called a sinus graft or sinus lift graft. The dental implant surgeon enters the sinus from where the upper teeth used to be. The sinus membrane is then lifted upward and donor bone is inserted into the floor of the sinus. Keep in mind that the floor of the sinus is the roof of the upper jaw. After several months of healing, the bone becomes part of the patient’s jaw and dental implants can be inserted and stabilized in this new sinus bone.
The sinus graft makes it possible for many patients to have dental implants when years ago there was no other option other than wearing dentures.
If enough bone between the upper jaw ridge and the bottom of the sinus is available to stabilize the implant well, sinus augmentations and implant placement can sometimes be performed as a single procedure. If not enough bone is available, the sinus augmentation will have to be performed first, then the graft will have to mature for several months, depending upon the type of graft material used. Once the graft has matured, the implants can be placed.
The common saying, “It’s like pulling teeth,” creates an image of this unfortunate but sometimes-necessary procedure most of us would rather avoid. We can quickly, and with minimal discomfort, treat a host of dental conditions, including advanced gum disease, broken, cracked, or excessively decayed or damaged teeth where root canals are not recommended.
We partner with you before, during, and after any dental procedures. Prior to any course of treatment, you can expect a thorough exam, including X-rays. We’ll also allow ample time for discussing your medical history (including any past extractions and associated problems, such as excessive bleeding), medications you take, and options for payment plans or insurance coverage. We dedicate ourselves to answering all of your questions and fully explaining what to expect before we proceed.
* Note: Many patients who have extractions benefit from dental implants paired with crowns to rebuild the tooth, so ask us about this prosthetic option.
The most common disease in the United States is not what you may think. Heart disease, stroke, or cancer come to mind, but actually gum disease is the single most prevalent disease in America. In fact, it affects more people than heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s, and cancer combined. About 80 percent of the population has some form of gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, periodontitis (advanced), and gingivitis (mild).
Disadvantages of Silver Fillings:
Silver fillings have many drawbacks. The edges of the silver filling can wear down, become weak or break. This results in the tooth not being protected and creates an environment where cavities get started once again. With age, the metal of a silver filling expands, contracts, and can split.
Silver fillings contain 50 percent mercury. They can corrode, leak, and cause stains on your teeth and gums.
Fortunately, silver fillings can safely be replaced with tooth-colored restorations.
There are many advantages to tooth-colored restorations. Resin onlays are bonded to the teeth creating a tight, superior fit to the natural tooth. Such restorations can be used in instances where much of the tooth structure has been lost. The tooth remains intact and stronger.
Since the resin used in tooth-colored restorations contain fluoride this can help prevent decay. The resin wears like natural teeth and does not require placement at the gum line, which is healthier for your gums!
The result is a beautiful smile!
Dentures are replacements for missing teeth that can be placed and removed from your mouth whenever you wish. Dentures can take some time to get used to because they are not the same as your natural teeth. The modern dentures available today are natural looking and more comfortable than ever.
Dentures are custom made in a dental laboratory from impressions taken of your mouth by your dentist. The two main types of dentures are full or partial. We will help you choose the type of denture that best suits your needs. Partial dentures rest on a metal framework that will attach to your natural teeth. If crowns are on some of your natural teeth, they sometimes can serve as anchors for your denture. Full dentures can be provided in two different ways. The conventional full denture is placed in your mouth after any remaining teeth are removed and tissues have all healed.
Healing may take several months, during which time you are without teeth. Some people are not comfortable being without their teeth, so another choice of full dentures is called the immediate full denture. Immediate full dentures are inserted immediately after the remaining teeth are removed. Your dentist will have taken measurements and made models of your jaw during a prior visit.
While immediate dentures offer the benefit of never having to be without your teeth, they must be realigned several months after being inserted into your mouth. The reason for this is that the bone supporting the teeth reshapes as it heals, which may cause the denture to become loose.
Your teeth contain several layers: the outer protective enamel, a secondary layer of sensitive dentin, and an inner pulp that contains components commonly referred to as the “nerve” of the tooth. A deep cavity, traumatic injury, or tooth fracture can make the canal susceptible to bacterial infection, which can kill the pulp, stimulate increased blood flow, and create pressure within the tooth. If you see a dentist in the earliest stages of this condition, the tooth may be saved with a root canal.
Will root canal therapy hurt?
Not with today's advanced analgesics and technology. In fact, the entire process can be so comfortable that many patients doze off. Oftentimes, root canal therapy can be completed in a single appointment. We simply clean out the diseased canal, fill it with a biologically-inert substance, seal it from further infection, and you're on your way. While some patients experience post-procedural soreness or slight tissue inflammation, these are controllable with over-the-counter analgesics. Follow-up care involves thorough home hygiene and regular dental visits for cleanings and checkups.
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